Germany International Travel Toddler Travel Trip Reports

Bavarian Summer: Slow Days with a Sick Toddler

Lounge chair at the summit of Mount Wank
Lounge chair at the summit of Mount Wank

We’ve spent the last two days acclimating to our house in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, a lovely little town that unfortunately is going through a spat of ugly weather. We’re also still dealing with jetlag and a still sick toddler, which in combination with the weather has us taking it easy. Luckily I booked us to stay here for over a week – I anticipated that M would need some time to adjust to traveling and while I didn’t predict she’d be sick, it works out.

M has been good spirits considering she's still under the weather
M has been good spirits considering she’s still under the weather

After our sweet flight and sixteen hours of slumber, I woke up ready to tackle the world. M, on the other hand, passed out after breakfast. Ultimately, we made it out to the local farmer’s market where we grabbed lunch and picked up some supplies. Aside from the pushy fruit salesman, the farmer’s market was great. We grabbed some cheese, fish, zucchini, and then picked up some chicken thighs for dinner from the local grocery store.

Farmer's Market Garmisch-Partenkirchen
Four pretzels and two wieners in my first ten waking hours in Germany – notice lack of hoodie

If you’ve seen any of my trip reports or know me at all, you probably know that I never leave home without my most trusted article of clothing – a hooded sweatshirt. Well, the 90 degree weather in Boston the day we left combined with my brain not having enough working memory due to worrying about M led to the unthinkable, THE UNTHINKABLE – I forgot all my hoodies at home. And while normally Jess would rejoice, it’s like 50 degrees here and I am woefully underpacked. So of course, I bought a hoodie at H&M after the farmer’s market and now am ready to conquer the world. I’m sure you all are thrilled that I shared this wonderful story with you; this is probably the first time in seven years I’ve had to buy clothing on a vacation – I blame it on you know who.

Our cheap stroller plus a disposable poncho did the trick for the rain
Our cheap stroller plus a disposable poncho did the trick for the rain

Anyway after shopping and a short siesta, the unexpected happened – the sun came out! Jess, M, my mom, and I decided to go for a walk while my dad had already begun a short nap. As Jess shut the door she casually called out, “Hey do you have the keys?” “Noooooooooooo <slam>”. Doh. So, we were locked out, but we figured we’d just wake my dad up on the return.

A toddler walking uphill redefines the word "slow"
A toddler walking uphill redefines the word “slow”

We took a lovely walk through Partenkirchen, the older part of town. Garmisch and Partenkirchen were once two towns but they merged for the 1936 Winter Olympics. We walked past a bunch of lovely stores and eateries that we could not go into because we also had left all our wallets inside. But M enjoyed the walk and also the hour it took us to wake my dad up after we got back (their room is on the third floor and the doorbell only rings in the foyer).

When will grandpa wake up?
When will grandpa wake up?

Jess cooked dinner and we sat down together for a lovely meal in the dining room. In my opinion, renting a house or apartment has a real advantage when you have kids. The extra space and the ability to make a place feel like “home” really makes life a lot easier. Since we were able to cook at home on our own schedule we weren’t forced to subject M to eating out when she isn’t feeling very well. Plus we’re bound to get sick of sausage soon enough so it was good to take a break.

A pretty decent spread for dinner
A pretty decent spread for dinner

M seems pretty well adjusted jetlag wise (slept from 9-6), but since she’s sick she needs an extra nap after breakfast. This has proven difficult because of her cough; she’s just not comfortable. Right now there is only one thing that will put her to sleep: this song. It’s just one of those weird things that has been working without fail since we got here. I’m not even sure why I played it for her the first time but it’s worked three times so far – hopefully it sticks until she feels better.

The view of Garmisch-Partenkirchen from our cable car up Mount Wank
The view of Garmisch-Partenkirchen from our cable car up Mount Wank

Anyway, Jess and I were thinking of climbing the local mountain, Mount Wank (hold all snickering, Wank means “mountain” in ze old German or something). Since M wasn’t feeling well and Jess is under the weather too, we decided to hold off and let them both nap. When they woke up the five of us took the cable car up to the top of Mount Wank and had wieners and noodle balls at the Wank Haus. Yes…that is exactly what we did.

Summit of Mount Wank
Jess: “Who needs Cristo Redentor?”

The views from the summit are exactly what I expected this trip to be about and hopefully the first of many spectacular views. Since the weather was dodgy it wasn’t too crowded at the top; everything was just so peaceful. We spent some time ambling around and just enjoying the views – and lounging in these massive wooden lounge chairs. The sun peeked in and out; the clouds really made everything feel just a touch more dramatic. We could have stayed up there for hours but eventually a storm looked like it was rolling in so we took the cable car back down. Hopefully we’ll be back to conquer the mountain soon.

Hoodies for everyone!
Hoodies for everyone!

Final Thoughts

With thunderstorms in the forecast it looks like tomorrow might be another rest day – which M and Jess probably need. We might all need it, I passed out while typing this – I’d estimate at least three of us are at sleep at any given time. On the cable car ride down, while M was snoring on my chest, Jess mentioned, “This is pretty different from how we would have done it without her.” And that’s true – we probably would have already climbed that mountain when we were childless. But it’s the little things that make it worth traveling with the toddler – teaching her her favorite word in a fourth language (dog = hunde), watching her walk two feet at a time to see if the river looks different from different vantage points, or seeing her demolish a pretzel with one hand while eating a sausage in the other. She might never remember this, but I think she’s having a great time.

Summit of Mount Wank
Next year let’s come back and ski that, gramps!

Other Posts in this Series


Final Preparations for the Little One

Lufthansa First Class with a Toddler

Slow Days with a Sick Toddler

Sightseeing in and around Garmisch-Partenkirchen

Observations After a Week in Germany

Climbing to AlpspiX and Neuschwanstein Castle

Zugspitze and Mittenwald

Sound of Music Bike Tour in Salzburg

Lazy Sunday in Salzburg – not

Rainy Days in Berchtesgaden

Visiting Museums and Biking in Vienna

Food in Germany and Austria

Rating the Toddler Friendliness of Our Hotels

Lufthansa First Class Terminal – Good for Toddlers?


Just an average joe trying to fly his family for less

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